Reports: FBI looking into Oregon's O-Care rollout

 

The FBI is investigating the botched rollout of Oregon's health insurance marketplace, according to multiple reports.

Cover Oregon is considered one of the worst-functioning systems created under ObamaCare. State officials are currently in the process of transferring management of the exchange to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

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The probe was reported late Sunday by The Wall Street Journal after local news outlets revealed that FBI agents were conducting interviews on the ground last week as part of a preliminary inquiry.

The agency said it does not confirm or comment on its investigations. 

“While the FBI launches their investigation into Cover Oregon, the individuals responsible for this boondoggle are Senator Jeff Merkley and his co-conspirator Governor John Kitzhaber," Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Preibus said.

He accused Merkley of casting the deciding vote for the legislation, and blamed Kitzhaber for botching the exchange.

"In a few months, Oregonians will finally be able to hold Kitzhaber and Merkley responsible for the failure of Cover Oregon," Preibus said.

The precise subject of the investigation has not been confirmed, though The Portland Oregonian reported Friday that some suspect Oregon officials misled the federal government when it came to the exchange's progress. 

Cover Oregon is already facing scrutiny from a variety of federal agencies, including HHS and the Government Accountability Office.

The exchange has cost about $130 million but still won't let registrants buy coverage and qualify for tax credits in one sitting. It had not enrolled a single person online as of early March.

The decision to hand the reins to HHS for the exchange's second year followed an analysis that found that fixing the system would cost Oregon $78 million. Transferring control of the exchange to the federal government will only cost $4 million to $6 million, state officials said.

This story was updated at 1:38 p.m.